Dear friends and fellow hyperbrains, it’s time for an announcement.
The blog has been silent for some months. I went silent because I really needed a break and some time for reflection. I needed to consider where I was heading with my life. I felt stuck, stagnated, in need of a major change.
Those of you who have followed the blog for some time know that I have a major goal which is buying myself a small farm to start living a bit more self-sufficient (again). Slowly I started to understand that I was in the wrong place and that I needed to do something drastic to get closer to how I really want to live and to feel more like myself again. Because a big part of the problem was that I had started to feel like a shadow of my former self, seeing time pass by and very little progress on my main goals.
After 11 years I’m returning back north
After living abroad for 11 years it is now time to return up north to Sweden, my home country. It wasn’t an obvious choice at first. It has been a long process to say the least. A process of lots of resistance and questioning what’s right for me. I’ve been asking myself if I could call it home again since so much has changed, both in the outside world and even more so inside of myself. But the more time passed the longing for silent forests and more space grew stronger. A longing for that special vibe that I cannot find somewhere else.
I have really tried to find a place to suit my needs in Germany, but nothing seemed to fit my criteria. Even more important, I never really felt at home here, never felt like I really belonged and never got the feeling of wanting to really settle and let the roots grow deep into the soil. Logic has rather little to do with such feelings, but nonetheless I know I need to listen to what my heart is telling me. Thus, I’m heading up north again.
The quest for a place to call home
I’m looking for something quite specific when it comes to a farm or piece of land. I do have a list of “musts” regarding size and location and of course some “wants” that I’m flexible with. But it also comes down to gut feel. I’ve been checking out a few places that fit perfectly with all criteria on my list, but they still didn’t feel right. If there’s something I’ve learned from moving quite a few times in my life (around 20 times by now) it is that the feel of the place has to be right. It has to feel like it has the potential to be a home when you cross the doorstep. If it doesn’t have that, I’m out. Doesn’t matter if it’s a fancy apartment or a ruin-like cabin (I’ve lived in both types), some places have it and some don’t.
What I’m trying to say here is that this is a process that might take some time. I’m not willing to settle for “just OK” this time because I’m honestly quite tired of moving around and not feeling like it’s worth my effort to really build up something steady and long-lasting. Then it’s better to wait and continue looking.
As a side-note, this is actually something that is quite difficult to deal with if you have moved around a lot. People have asked me if I even CAN settle at all and the true answer is that I don’t really know, but I hope that I can. Regardless, I want to have a place that I can return to, even if I decide to go away for a while. A place that is just mine and that nobody can take away from me. (Let’s exclude warfare or natural disasters from this equation for now, I’m well aware that there are no guarantees against such events.)
How? Van life
To be able to go check places when they come out on the market I have to be flexible. So I started thinking how I could achieve this. Sure, I could rent an apartment or a small cabin in the region where I want to look for places, but then I started thinking “why not go for a van?”. Like that I could head out and check places right away to know if it’s even worth attending the official viewing of them. Also, I can get a proper feel for how certain areas are really like. Finding a true home is so much more than just the house and your own small plot of land. Preferably you should also be able to feel at home in the surrounding areas.
Living in a van is actually something that I’ve dreamed of doing for some time. Not as a permanent solution, but as an adventure to try out for a shorter period of time. Before now I just didn’t have the possibility or guts to do it. There was always something else coming in between, but this time I’m going for it! If not now, then when would I do it?
I have built up a life where I can work from wherever I want, as long as I have power for my laptop and a decent Internet connection. So why should I just sit around in an apartment and not use my freedom to a higher extent? The only good answer to this is that I have to try it out. If it isn’t for me then I can always go back to “normal” life.
Discomfort as a tool to grow inside
Yes, I’m aware that living in a van will be uncomfortable at times, but I see it as a challenge that I’m willing to take on. I believe that it will help me grow as a person. I’m not very scared of discomfort of that kind. Honestly, sometimes I search for slight discomfort to feel more alive. I’m already used to spending a few nights in tents at temperatures below zero degrees Celsius, been camping in my current car for quite a bit and recently spent six weeks away from home visiting friends and family. Staying in my own vehicle will mean that I have my own private space and in Sweden it isn’t very difficult to find a place to camp where you’ll be left alone.
If I get really fed up I have friends and family that I can stay with for a few days. If I haven’t found what I’m looking for until autumn I’ll rent an apartment or cabin over the winter. It’s not very difficult to find. Knowing that I have this kind of safety net makes me feel quite safe and ready for trying this out.
The next steps
Right now I’m in the process of buying the right vehicle. I’m going for something big enough to transport my belongings up to Sweden and put most of it in storage. Then I will do a simple camper re-build fitting in a proper bed, seating, table and a solar system to be able to work as well as a small kitchen. Then I’m ready to go. I’m aiming for leaving mid April and I’ll keep you posted on the progress here of course.